With twelve tours slotted for various destinations in 2016 and 2017, the Dog Film Festival is sure to make pet parents and pooches sit up and beg for more. This dog/human bonding experience was created by Vermont-based pet wellness advocate and radio personality, Tracie Hotchner.
The tour kicked off its first showing to an enthusiastic crowd in LA on June 4th with an Afternoon Tea Pooch Party at VCA West Los Angeles Animal Hospital. It was complete with a green carpet where celebrity Melissa Rivers made an appearance, along with some cool canine celebs.
The fur-tastic fun continued on June 5th at the Crest Theater with dog-centric shorts from around the world and a sneak preview of the screened highlights by The Hollywood Reporter film critic and self-admitted non-dog person, Michael Rechtshaffen.
Although, there are no feature lengths in this tour, the festival is designed to bring a number of exceptional short films from around the world edited into one continuous film experience. These two completely different 1 ½ hour selections are totally family-friendly, so your kids can come along for the furry fun, too.
RELATED: How to Get Your Dog Into Movies
Program One is slotted to bring a more light-hearted fun with a selection of commercials and animated, documentary and narrative films. These include a delightful British vignette promoting adoption called Harvey Dogs Home, Fog of Courage. In this piece, a cowardly dog must save his owner from an angry fog. Also featured is a heartwarming tale of a Jack Russell who teaches her pup how to follow in her paws while she climbs sheer cliffs in Biscuit/Return to Sender.
In addition, Program One also features The Hardly Boys In Hardly Gold. This 28 minute film features the work of the great photographer and dog-centric New Yorker William Wegman, who made this astonishing film in 1995 using only a 35 MM camera. He graciously had it re-mixed and remastered in high definition especially for the Dog Film Festival.
The short piece stars four of his female Weimaraners in full costume, with Bill Wegman's deadpan voice-over carrying the plot. This film shows Wegman's genius as an original creative force in making his dogs part of his art.
Program Two is a mix of thought-provoking and more sophisticated films (some with subtitles) that include Dog Years where a pooch questions his relationship with his frequently absent owner, Second Chances that documents how dogs give prisoners a “second chance” by giving them the privilege of training a canine, and a British director's tale of how a Black Lab inspired those around her in There's Something About Molly.
Sponsored by a grant made possible through PetCo, this multi-faceted film festival benefits a deserving animal group within the performing city. 50% of the ticket sales are going to this cause. In addition, people are encouraged to check out the participating shelters to get more information on the exceptional work they do daily for animals in need.
If you'd like more information on The Dog Film Festival and the cities it's scheduled to appear in, check out their website…you can even submit a film for consideration for the next tour if you'd like.